Italian sportswear brand Kappa has been announced as the new official sportswear supplier of motor racing’s iconic annual 24 Hours of Le Mans and race organizer Automobile Club de L’Ouest (ACO).
The three-year deal was brokered by international sports and entertainment agency IMG, Le Mans’ exclusive licensing agency, and will see Kappa design a new sportswear range each year for ACO staff during the 2024, 2025, and 2026 editions.
The designs will also be available for fans to purchase in Le Man’s official stores, online, and inside the race village during the events.
ACO’s president Pierre Filon said: “We are excited to be building new relationships at a time when endurance racing is undergoing a surge in popularity. Kappa will add impetus to our growth as a vector for the 24 Hours of Le Mans brand.”
IMG has secured several new partnerships for Le Mans this year, including toy manufacturer Silverlit, and fashion brand Bershka, among others. Before Kappa, Castore was the race's official sportswear supplier.
The agency has been the licensing partner of the ACO, the race’s organizing body, since 2008, with the pair extending their agreement in 2021 to run until after the 2024 edition.
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During the partnership, the ACO has been keen to capitalize on its licensing program to generate year-round attention and develop its revenue streams.
The deal, meanwhile, expands Kappa’s growing kit supplier portfolio, which includes a collaboration with the VWT Alpine Formula 1 motor racing team, as well as multiple partnerships with European soccer clubs including Italy’s Fiorentina, Napoli, and Genoa, France’s Monaco and Metz, and Germany’s Mainz 05.
The brand also has a long-standing presence within rugby, with multiple domestic teams across Europe, including in France’s Top 14 league.
It has recently secured deals with North America’s Major League Rugby, the European Professional Club Rugby continental governing body, and the United Rugby Championship, the Europe-based rugby union club competition.
Remi Garnier, country manager for Kappa France, said: “It gives us great pleasure to strengthen our ties with the motorsport world and to pursue our commitment to the sector with a long-standing, iconic brand.”
This year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans race, held on June 10 and 11, marked the centenary since the first race took place in 1923. The 2024 edition is due to take place from June 15 and 16 next year.
Read more: Beyond 24 Hours: How Le Mans' licensing program keeps the midnight oil burning.